DVC students Gallo and Abad win Animation Mentor Scholarships

Daniel AbadAlysse GalloThe first ACME Animation Mentor Scholarships have been awarded to four students in California, and two Diablo Valley College students were among the winners. The Animation Scholarship covers a six-week course of instruction in an area of animation.

The ACME Network (Arts, Communication and Media Education) provides students with a chance to receive feedback on their work from a wide audience. Its mentoring program enables students to build a working professional relationship with their peers and industry professionals.

The two DVC student winners, Alysse Gallo and Daniel Abad, are students of Arthur Scott King at DVC. Both Alysse and Daniel were recognized on ACME because of a high work ethic, taking the work they do and the feedback they receive very seriously, and for the high level of commitment they demonstrated over the course of several assignments. 

“I have shared the ACME program with my students for almost a decade,” King said, “and over that time both ACME as a company and my students have benefited from it. ACME is continually striving to refine and elevate the services that they offer our students in keeping with industry and technological changes. As my students participate with the ACME program I can see a change happen in them. They understand that working in the field of animation is a real possibility. They meet other people with interests and ideas that are working in the same industry that they are considering, making class and their college experience more engaging and real.”

Alysse Gallo is a former DVC student who is now applying to four-year schools toward a major in interactive computer design or 3-D animation.

Gallo said, “I have always been fascinated with animation and I knew from a young age that I wanted to study this subject in college. I pursued my passion by taking beginning animation classes at Diablo Valley College to study the fundamentals and techniques of animation. 

“It was through these classes that I discovered ACME Animation, which is an amazing resource,” she continued. “ACME Animation is a great program that allows students to better hone their skills in animation by receiving feedback from mentors and industry professionals. I received constructive critiques from ACME that helped me develop my knowledge in animation techniques and the finite details that make an animation more appealing.” 

Gallo currently is applying for a Master’s in Human-Computer Interaction to begin a career as a User Experience Designer. “UX Design is a combination of all my passions, which I discovered through exploring my interests of animation and technology. This amazing Animation Mentor scholarship from ACME has already helped me improve in my work and expand my knowledge of 3D animation. I have learned new skills in this workshop and will apply these concepts to my educational and professional work.”  

Daniel Abad caught the eye of the ACME Network mentors on one of the ACME On-Air live telecasts. “We were impressed to learn that he had only been studying animation for the one semester with instructor Arthur Scott King at Diablo Valley College,” an ACME representative said. “Through Daniel’s hard work and consistent involvement his work was progressing quickly. As a U.S. Marine, he was up for the challenge!” 

Daniel has been drawing since childhood. “I’m sure any artist you ask would say their artwork is very personal,” he said. “ACME has helped me grow out of my shell by encouraging me to put my work out there for other students and professionals to critique. It was scary even before putting my work out there, knowing the possibility of negative comments. However, the high level of professionalism shown by the ACME community and the AM mentors have changed my view of showing off my work. Without their feedback, how else could I grow? ACME has definitely made the experience easier and the AM Maya scholarship has been a tremendous benefit. 

“On the road to discovering who I am as an artist, I’ve learned that I love 3D animation work. The AM community and its mentors play an important role in helping me learn, and the advice the mentors give you is invaluable.”

Daniel is currently a student in King’s intermediate animation class, and is leaning toward studying character design animation and lighting effects.